Question: I have been trying to get closer to my Creator but had the salafi mind set. I have been watching Shaykh AbdulKerim Efendi’s videos for quite some time. I started reading books by Imam Ghazali and the likes of him and came across Shaykh Efendi. I am 75% considering about giving bayat to the shaykh but I am reluctant to. I think this is because I still may be a bit confused. I believe that both paths are correct and both paths have some flaws from the people following them and not the path themselves. Divine Law and spirituality when combined is key. I am confused and need your help to get out of this confusion.
BismillahirRahmanirRahim. Destur. InshAllah may Allah bring us out from this confusion. Confusion is to say, Haqq and batil they are the same. That Haqq is one path and batil is another path, it is the same. It is not the same. Now you are right because you said that you are confused, a little bit you seem to be because now when you talk about salafism, when you talk about, say, Tasawwuf, these are not just different path leading to Allah, and these are not just, paths are both leading to Allah but certain practices and certain practitioners they are not really that good but you cannot blame the whole path because of that. It is not that kind of dialectic, it is not that kind of argument.
When you said that you want to take beyat, you want to take beyat to what? To the Naksibendi order. The Naksibendi order, what is that order? It is the highest order of Sufism, Tasawwuf. What is Tasawwuf? Tasawwuf, it is Ihsan, to make your religion to be beautiful. And it is a spiritual way. Who started it? The Holy Prophet (asws) did. Is there a lineage leading to him? Yes there is. Is that lineage unbroken? Because you may claim to have a lineage but maybe you jump one thousand years and one thousand years later you claim to have. No, it has to be unbroken. And not only unbroken, it has to be blessed. Because batil also has a lineage. What we see today with ISIS and this kinds, they have a lineage too, all the way from the time of the Prophet (asws), the time of the Sahabi e-Kiram, they are called the kharijis and that lineage it continues, sometimes going underground and sometimes it’s going up.
So now you say salafism. Now don’t get confuse. Salafism does not mean shariat, and Tarikat does not mean anti-shariat. When you get into that kind of understanding, then it gets very confuse because who are those people who are talking about, either people who have nothing to say really, or they are not practitioner of those way or they are just academics talking. So what is salafism? It is not shariat. Salafis now, it is a movement. Did that movement come fourteen hundred years ago? No. That movement came less than a hundred years ago. So, the chain is broken. It is something that is new that came up. The ideas may be old, but it is a new movement. Now why do the Salafis first call themselves salafis? What is that word from, Salafs? Calling themselves Salafis, what does that mean? What is salafis? The first one in the rank. Who are those ones who are the first in the rank? Let me give you an example. Imagine there is one movement that came out and they are saying, ‘we are following Prophet, we are following shariat properly. No one else does. We are doing this properly and we are calling ourselves Sahabis.’ Is it acceptable? Why? Because Sahabis, companions, it is specific to only those ones who live during the time of the Prophet (asws), who has met him.
Who are the Salafis? The Salafis are the Sahabis. It is one of their titles- first one on the rank. So for people one thousand three hundred, four hundred years later to call themselves salafis, by itself it is is an innovation and it is filled with arrogance. Because we are just happy to call ourselves muslims. And the idea that everyone else is not following shariat properly, only the salafis are following shariat properly for one thousand four hundred years, that by itself is arrogance and arrogance is coming from sheytan and will lead you to innovation, and it will lead you to the fire.
Now if you say, I like this way, the salafi way because it is reliance heavily on the shariat. We say, very good. But the salafi way is not the only way that relies on the shariat, that leans itself on shariat, that takes pleasure and joy and satisfaction with the shariat, with the laws of Allah. You know something, for 1400 years, the majority, ninety-nine percent of the ways of the Muslims, is happy holding on and relying and finding joy in the laws of Allah. So Salafis are not the only one after 1400 years, to come up and to say, ‘we are the ones following the shariat.’ Everyone has been following the shariat. Now if you are saying, ‘well I like to be in shariat but I also am drawn towards spirituality but I believe there is a way for shariat, for the law and for spirituality.’ We say then you are going into the argument that so many people they are falling into, to say that there is now a separation, to assume that spiritual orders they don’t practice shariat. Who says this? There may be some people in spiritual orders who is looking down on shariat. That is wrong. Who is saying that is right? And that does not define spirituality. In much the same way as there are people in the name of shariat they commit so much evil, in the name of shariat they commit the worse level of atrocities but that does not mean that the shariat it is wrong. It means that those people they have abuse it.
Now what are we trying to achieve here? We are trying to become, leave salafis, leave Sufis, we are trying to become Abdullah. And what is that Abdullah, what is that servant of Allah? Who are you looking to be? Who are you looking to follow, to be that Abdullah? Our guide must be the Holy Prophet (asws). And the Prophet, he is not just holding to the laws of Allah, he is holding on to the spirituality as well. With that, with these two wings, you can fly. Otherwise, you cannot do anything with that. And you are always going to be confused thinking it is one or the other. It is both. It is not one or the other. And Tarikat represents both. If you only have shariat without Tarikat, your religion it is going to be dry, tasteless. And your heart will dry up. And your concentration and your focus is just going to be the rituals, the zahir part of the religion. You have to have the batin, the spirituality, that fills it to give it more, to give it real life, to give it meaning. If you have spirituality and you are saying we are not accepting shariat and that there’s no kind of Sufism that is like that, it is not acceptable. If you say that we are only going to follow spirituality without the shariat, it is like saying, now that fruit it doesn’t need a cover, it doesn’t need the skin, the most important thing is what is inside. Then what becomes to a fruit that has no skin? It becomes rotten. No good for nothing. You eat it, it becomes poison to you. Don’t eat fruits that are not protected.
So now when you look at salafism, what is the lineage of salafism? Where is it coming from? Undeniable it’s coming from wahhabism. And wahhabism, in reality it is a heresy. I don’t like to use Christian words, English words, but it is heretical. Because it is out of the way of the Prophet (asws). I don’t want to get into that wahhabi, sufi, sunni kind of…that you can find out, you can research and you can ask. And, it is because of this wahhabi poison that the enemies of Islam they have supported this rise of wahhabism, brought down the Khilafat, divided the ummat that have been supported by the enemies of Islam up till today, that the problems of this world and of the muslims are continuing because of that root evil of wahhabism. And salafism is coming from that. They curse and they hate Sufi so much, but you know what? Sufis aren’t the ones who are committing evil in this world. And the problem is, they are saying, now you can fight evil with evil. Because we are not saying the wahhabis are the ones, is the only one who are committing, of course the enemies of Islam they are committing that, but you have to understand now, they are supporting each other.
What do we do? How do we prepare? At first, we must not be confused. Know what is Haqq and what is batil, what is right and what is wrong. You know that, keep yourself out. Live your life simple and clean. Don’t try to change anything because you cannot. Try to change yourself. Try to find like-minded people, pull yourself out. This is what the Prophet (asws) said, ‘In that time of confusion, run to the mountains. Live simply.’ Now, he just doesn’t mean it literally to do that, he also means now not to get so involve trying to know so much, running after so many things. Live simple. Be clean. And wait for SahibulZaman to appear. This is what we are doing. It is up to you to follow this way or not. This is what we are preparing. We are understanding evil and the evil that is behind evil, and the evil that is behind that evil. Because evil never show its face as one, there’s always endless mask that goes back and goes back and goes back. And if you are in the way of Haqq, you must know evil. You cannot say, in order to know Allah I cannot know what is Allah’s enemy. Don’t say Allah’s enemy is sheytan. No. Man’s enemy is sheytan. The enemy of Allah it is our ego. That is in each and everyone of us. And this is what Tarikat is concentrating on.
We are taking all the laws of the shariat and putting it on ourselves more than others. But we are also putting the laws of spirituality to understand, to say, La ilaha illallah, but to look not outside for the ilahs to say La to, to look inside of us to find what are the ilahs that we have inside of us, to get rid of that, to come to Ilallah, only in the way of MuhammadurRasulullah.
Welcome to those who come, farewell to those who leave. May Allah guide you. You don’t have to take my word for it. We are not here to collect people. We are here to say couple of words. Those who listen they listen for their own benefit. May Allah forgive me and bless you. May Allah raise the station of our Sheykh. May Allah bring more patience and more strength to the people who are under torture, who are under suffering, who are under pain, may Allah forgive us for our inaction, may Allah remove the tyrants and put new ones who are good, may Allah make us to be able to be strong one day to hold this justice everywhere. For the sake of the Holy Prophet (asws), for the sake of our Sheykh, al-Fatiha.
Sheykh Lokman Efendi Hz
Khalifah of SahibulSaif Shaykh Abdulkerim el Kibrisi (qs),
OSMANLI DERGAHI- New York
16 Rabiul Awwal 1438
December 16, 2016